Choosing Pool Builder

Having a pool built on the property is a major undertaking. By taking the time now to make very deliberate tough decisions, the pool owner can avoid delays, disappointment and even financial loss. You need

  • to decide how much you can afford to spend,
  • to select a reputable pool builder you can work with,
  • and to negotiate the contract that accurately describes what you want to build.

Of these three factors mentioned above, choosing a pool builder is the most difficult and the most important. A reputable builder will assure you of a quality swimming pool within your budget limitations. The pool builder you choose will negotiate a contract with you that adequately describes your future pool and the work to be done. And finally, the pool builder will see that the work is done to your satisfaction.

Obviously, you want a quality pool, one that meets most if not all of your needs, at a price you can afford. Your costs will depend on the area you live in, the time of the year, the quality of the materials and the workmanship, and the competitive market. The way you arrange to have a swimming pool built will also affect the costs. These are the options:

A) You can let a landscape architect handle the whole project for you.

B) You can contract directly with the pool builder.

C) You can do part or all of the work yourself.

Landscape architect not only can provide you with an integrated pool landscape design, but also can handle all the details of having the work done – negotiating contracts for you with the pool builder and any other contractor involved and overseeing their work. Though you will pay more than if you dealt directly with the pool builder, the landscape architect gives you an original design and protects your interests.

Another possibility is to use the architect’s design and work directly with the pool builder and the other contractors yourself. But be prepared to spend considerable time and effort on the project.

Custom Pool Builders often can design not only the pool but also the surrounding landscaping. The pool builder then can do the entire job, or you can handle the landscaping yourself after the pool is completed. Either way will usually cost less than working with a landscape architect, but the design may lack some of the finer touches and the demand on your time will be much greater.

Other pool builders may contract only for a pool selected from their available designs. This approach, at least initially, is the least costly, but you may not be as satisfied with the results. And you will still be faced with the considerable effort and expense of landscaping the pool.

Building your own pool, usually vinyl-lined, from a packaged pool kit is a possibility, particularly if you are competent at do-it-yourself projects and have some willing friends. You will save money – but be prepared for a lot of hard work.

Some pool builders, if you convince them of your competence, may agree to your doing some of the pool building tasks and reduce the contract price accordingly. But you must be prepared to do the work when required or pay for delays on other parts of the project.

Stretching Your Dollars

Sometimes you can save money by contracting for a pool during a bargain season. Just when that is and how much you will save depend on your location and the local competition. The bargain season in New England, the mid-Atlantic region, and the Midwest begins in July and runs through early fall. Winter may bring some price reduction on pool construction in the western and southern states, but the savings probably won’t be nearly as great as in the colder areas.